A Work Licence must not be mistaken for a Work Visa. It is more akin to a regular driver’s licence but offers more. It is a document that allows Australian employees to drive their car to and from work. This is issued when their personal driver’s licence has been rendered invalid by the authorities due to violations of the traffic and driving laws such as drunk driving.
So, if you ever get your licence cancelled after a boozy Friday night at a nearby pub and you have to go to work on Monday, don’t worry, you can apply for a work licence as an alternative. Keep in mind, though, that work licences are provided only in the state of Queensland.
Applying for a Work Licence
Australian magistrates are tasked to review and then approve work licence applications. You need to apply for one in court and wait for the magistrate’s approval. The magistrate follows strict criteria and considers certain factors before giving an application the green light. Their considerations include everything about the applicant, which will help them determine if the applicant is eligible for a work licence or not. For this reason, it is important to always be responsible when driving, whether with a regular licence or a work licence.
Who is eligible for a Work Licence?
You can apply for a work licence if you:
- Are charged with drunk driving, failed to provide a breath sample at the roadside, or were driving with a relevant drug (cannabis, ecstasy, or ice) in your saliva or blood
- Plead guilty to any of the following offences and are sure to lose your licence or have it cancelled:
- Drunk Driving
- Driving with one or more relevant drugs (cannabis, ecstasy, or ice) in your saliva or blood
- In charge of a vehicle while going over the imposed speed limit
- In charge of a vehicle with one or more relevant drugs (cannabis, ecstasy, or ice) in your saliva or blood
- Failure to supply or provide breath or saliva sample at the roadside
It is important to remember that drunk driving and driving while under the influence of alcohol or relevant drugs are not the same, according to the traffic laws in Australia. Driving while under the influence of alcohol, cannabis, ecstasy, or ice is punishable with more serious penalties like the payment of fines and even jail time.
In addition to the criteria mentioned earlier, you must also meet the following requirements to have your work licence application approved:
- You have a Queensland-issued driver’s licence for the vehicle you were driving at the time you were caught or apprehended by law enforcers for any of the offences listed above.
- Your blood alcohol concentration level was below 0.15% at the time you were caught or apprehended by the law enforcers for any of the offences listed above.
- You were not driving with a licence that required a zero-level blood alcohol concentration at the time you were caught or apprehended by law enforcers for any of the offences listed above. This is true for those who have a provisional or learner licence.
- You have an ongoing open driver’s licence issued in Queensland when you submit the application for a work licence.
- You haven’t been convicted of drunk driving or other similar offences anywhere in the past five years.
- You haven’t been charged anywhere in Queensland of dangerous driving in the past five years.
- Your licence has never been cancelled, suspended, or disqualified in the past five years.
An exception to this criterion is when the agency issuing State Penalties for driving temporarily revoked your licence, either because you didn’t pay the required fine or your licence was meted with a 24-hour suspension after you were slapped with a charge.
Meeting these criteria does not guarantee that your work licence application will be approved, as you also have to show the Magistrate that you are a fit and proper person and that you’ll lose a job if you fail to get a work licence, which will in turn cause you and your family extreme hardship. Likewise, it is important to apply for a work licence at the time of conviction and before the court decides to disqualify or suspend your licence.
Your work licence application may also be approved even if you don’t need it after you get to your job, but you need it to get there and to travel back, that is, if public transportation is not available and there’s no one else who can drive you to and from your workplace.
What will disqualify you from getting a Work Licence?
Any of the following instances will prevent you from being granted a work licence:
- If you’re the sole driver in the family and you need the licence to take a relative to their hospital appointments or if you need to bring your children to and from school
- You do need a licence for your current work, but you can easily get another job that won’t require a licence, which means that not having one will not lead to financial problems for you
- You don’t need a licence for your current job even if having one will give you convenience
- You don’t have a job, even if you are currently looking for one
Don’t let a simple mistake hinder you from fulfilling your work responsibilities and ensuring financial stability for you and your family. If you need further assistance with applying for a work licence, feel free to contact our team at FC Lawyers.
We will guide you through each step of the process and ensure that you get the benefits and privileges you’re entitled to.